Get off life’s roller coaster!

You have a choice.  You can stay on that wild, crazy ride of ups and downs or settle into a more gentle, predictable lifestyle.

How to do it:

Set up your emergency fund—for a real emergency.  This is money you do not dip in to.

Choose a day each week that you do not spend any money.

Pay off one bill early.

Let go of what you do not want for what you do want.

Psst, I am paying an extra $100 each month to pay off one loan early.

Breathe Easier Without Meds:

  • Clean your air registers.
  • Buy the largest air filter with the highest purification percentage.
  • Take the filter apart (cut off paper; remove wire).
  • Measure a register.
  • Cut the filter to fit the inside of the register.  (should fit without tape).
  • Replace the register back into the opening.

Repeat this process until you have finished the entire project.

You will almost immediately notice there is less dust in the air.

Book Nook:

Years ago, I read, No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, by Alexander McCall Smith.  A few days ago, I borrowed his newest book from our library.

The House of Unexpected Sisters, by Alexander McCall Smith was a delight.  I have never figured out he brings his characters in Africa to life—a gentler life at that.  Do you know where to buy red bush tea?

It has turned bitter cold here again (16 degrees) and I was hoping spring was just around the corner.  Wrong.

One of the best ways to bring warmth to a freezing day is to read a good book.  I invite you to join me in my favorite pass time!

Thanks for dropping by.     Kathleen 





It will go to the 30s today in North Platte.  That is a sure sign that spring is heading this way!

One of the nicest things about our small apartment is that it has plenty of natural light.  No matter how cold it is outside, it feels warm and cozy in the living and dining room because the windows face south.

We get about 20 inches of rain a year.  That equates to clear, sunny skies much of the time.

Ways to brighten your living space:

  • Paint your walls a light color.
  • Clear away unwanted clutter.
  • Replace your air filters.
  • Wash your windows.
  • Do a spring cleaning.

You don’t have to make a big project out of it to get into the spring swing of things.  Take a small garbage bag and walk around the house.  As you walk through your home, drop things into the bag along the way.  Once the bag is full, take it to your trash can or dumpster outside.  Job done!

By doing small cleaning jobs on a regular basis, you save yourself time.  Then when that first day of spring hits your area, you are free to go outside and enjoy it.

Butterflies overwinter in the mountains in Mexico:

From what I have been reading, the numbers of Monarchs are still in decline.

That is not good news for them or us humans.  They need our help!

Buy a couple of 🌺 seed packets, a large jiffy planting tray and have at it. Now is the time to start planting those 🌸 seeds.  Round up the family and start a real science project on your sunny, enclosed porch or window sill.

When the chance of frost is past—plant the seedlings you have grown.  All summer you will be rewarded for your efforts.  All the bees, butterflies and your neighbors will thank you!


❤️ ❤️ ❤️

Happy Valentines Day

❤️ ❤️ ❤️


Thanks for dropping by.         Kathleen 


The Matter of Trust:

Who do you trust?

  • Your parents?
  • Your children?
  • Your boss?
  • Your government?

Do you trust yourself to make good decisions?

Many people have a challenge finding people they can trust.

I was taught trust is earned—not given.

I researched books on trust and found plenty out there.  They went from trusting God to creating trust with customers.

Children can spot an untrustworthy person in a second.  How do they do it?  With their gut.


Trust is a fundamental factor in creating and maintaining meaningful relationships.  Trusting in someone can mean everything from telling a person your deepest secrets to knowing they will be on time for an appointment.  There are many levels of trust, but all require you to put your faith in someone.


Book Nook:

The Critical Mind, by Zoe McKey

The theme of this book is to learn how to make better decisions, improve your judgement and to think a step ahead of others.

Love Undocumented:  Risking Trust in a Fearful World, by Sarah Quezada

This is Sara’s first book.  Being an immigrant, I feel she has a lot to offer on the issue of trust.

Spring is coming!

I Have Zone 4 Milkweed Seeds — Send SASE For Some

I know it is still February.  This gardener put out two planters on the front landing just the other day.  Those same planters are now covered with snow.

Heady fragrance is a pure delight!

Thanks for dropping by.    Kathleen 

15 Ways to Chase the Winter Blahs Away

Chase those winter blahs away!

  1. Get plenty of sleep.
  2. Make sure the kids and spouse get plenty of sleep too.
  3. Drink several glasses of water daily.
  4. Enjoy frequent cups of hot tea.
  5. Use lip balm all day long.
  6. Wear appropriate winter wear.
  7. Enjoy a cup or two of hot cocoa.
  8. Lather on moisturizing hand cream.
  9. Apply facial moisturizer with SPF 30.
  10. Rub a little petrolieum on the bottom of feet before bed.
  11. Turn off the TV.
  12. Get an electric blanket for your bed.
  13. Wear soft socks to bed.
  14. Put flannel sheets on the bed.
  15. Curl up with a good book.

Yep!  There are lots of other ways to warm up this winter.

With the flu season in full swing, it is especially important to slow down and cuddle down.

Keep sweets and junk food out of sight for awhile.  They tend to give you sugar spikes, rather than real nourishment.

While you are handing around the house…

You could ask the kids what toys they want to donate.  Make sure to run any soft toys through the washer and dryer to kill possible germs.

You could also keep a plastic bag handy for item you want to donate.

Favorite things needy folks ❤️

  • SOCKS, socks and more socks.
  • Bedroom slippers.
  • Bathrobes.
  • Sleepwear.
  • Undies.
  • Men’s under shirts.
  • Thermal underwear.
  • Sweaters.
  • Jackets.
  • Flannel shirts.

To be successful, it is important to gather and clean all items.  Put your items near the door you use to exit the house.  Take time right then to put them in the car.  Schedule your drop off for the next day or two.

A Grateful ❤️ Is a Happy ❤️

The best way I know of to shake the blues is to count your blessings!

You can do it throughout the day—anywhere. Blessings come in all sizes.

A lesson on how to insert links in a blog:

As many of you know, I have been unsuccessful in my attempts to correctly insert links into my posts.

This afternoon, I was directed to a new plugin, which I have activated.

Please do me a favor and click on the above link, so we can test it!

The Arbor Day Foundation was started in Nebraska City, Nebraska.

Should you be a plant lover like me, then I invite you to join.

Thanks for dropping by.    Kathleen 

Create Order in the Chaos in Your Life

Albert Einstein believed there was order in chaos.  As you go through your day, sometimes there  seems to be no order in the chaos you are experiencing.

You create order and chaos vanishes:

  • Choose where you want to start.

It doesn’t matter whether it is using a budget, brushing your teeth, or making your bed.

  • What drives you crazy most often?

That is a tip—where to start.  You don’t have have to make a big production of it.  Just start working on getting rid of it.

  • Do you really hate your long commute to work?

Ask your boss if there is any way you could work from home one or two days a week.

Check with coworkers that live near you to share the drive.

Take public transportation.  You may save on car insurance.

Is there a satellite office where you could work that is closer to home?

Every snow flake is unique.  Everyone  Is unique.

We all face our own challenges and accept our own gifts uniquely.  To make positive changes in our lives, we do not have to start at point A.  We can implement changes of our choosing anywhere and at any time in our lives.

Some people make long, complicated lists of all the changes they want to make.  Then they get distracted.  The list gets put in a drawer, only to be rediscovered months later.

Keep your list short.  Put it where you will see it often.

Time and snowflakes melt quickly.

Act now and improve your life!

👪    ❤️   👪

Caregiver’s Advice

It’s not selfish 

to take care

of yourself, too.

Continue reading

Get rid of pesky calls on your iPhone!

Start the New Year off right by getting rid of pesky calls on your iPhone:

To block incoming calls:

  • Go to recents.
  • Look to the right of the telephone number.
  • Tap the blue circle with the letter i in the center.
  • Scroll to very bottom of screen.
  • Tap block this caller.

In the future, when the person with this number calls you, they will hear the phone ring.  They can leave a message if they like.

You will not be bothered by hearing their incoming call nor will you ever have to listen to their message.

You can remove the block on their phone number should you choose to.

Take time to identify which calls you truly want to block.  This is a simple way to regain control of your life.  Give it a try and see for yourself.

Turn off your phone during meals.

This is another easy way to avoid unwanted calls during family time.

Turn off the TV during meals.

You know how hard it is to hear the person taking to you when the television is blaring in the background.  Mealtime is family time, no matter how small.  Many of us endure long commutes to and from work and may be pretty tired by the time we walk in the door.

It is important to create a safe harbor in our lives.  Our homes are supposed to be our safe harbor.  It is up to us to create that space.

The above quote sure is true!  How many little bills or daily expenses do you have that rob you of cash for your emergency fund?

How do you get your money under control?

  • Pay yourself first.

You pay yourself first by setting up a savings account with automatic deposits from each of your electronically deposited pay checks.

  • Open a checking and savings account at a CREDIT UNION.
  • Open a 401k plan at work.  Check if your company will match you.
  • Buy company stock with employee purchase plan.
  • Start small—start saving some of your pay check today!

I’ve learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness depends on our dispositions and not on our circumstances.

— Martha Washington —

Thanks for dropping by.     Kathleen 

Continue reading

Jumpstart your day — every day!

Jumpstart your day — every day!

We often think we should wait to start a resolution.  Think again.  EVERY day is a new day.  That means it’s okay to start any new habit.

  • Get up 15 minutes earlier, for time for yourself.
  • Make up the bed as soon you get up.
  • Have breakfast.
  • Start an emergency fund.
  • Start a Vacation Account at your bank.

Create order out of chaos in your daily life.  You know something you have been itching to do for years and haven’t done it yet.  Now is the time.

Okay.  You have your game plan in place.  Remember, there will be days when you just don’t want to make the effort to follow through with your new habit.  Bite the bullet and get your bed made anyway.

Successful people keep at it.  Day in and day out.  That is why they are successful!  That can be you.

You can reply to this post or write to me directly at  I would love ❤️ to hear from you!


I snapped this shot of the Amaryllis I had put in a glass of water because it had grown so tall.   It was about to fall over, pot and all.

Fresh flowers on the table always make the meal!

Catfish Johnnies — great seafood — country music too!

Those of you that are either heading to central Florida this winter, or are already there, don’t miss a mouth watering meal at Catfish Johnny’s.

The restaurant is located a little off the beaten path in Lake Panasoffkee, FL.  Give them a call at 352-793-2083.  They will advise you to come early for their 12:00 pm seating.


The great gift of human beings is that’s have the power of empathy.

— Meryl Streep —

Book Nook:

The Outermost Houseby Henry Beston  is for those that love the ocean and Cape Cod.  Fortunately for me, I saw the Outermost House before it was washed out to sea during the Blizzard of 1978.

Gift from the Seaby Anne Morrow Lindbergh   is about taking time out for reflection.   I actually moved to Ft. Meyers, FL because I was so taken with this book.

Most of us live very hectic lives and rarely follow our dreams.  Take the leap and live your dreams.  It will be worth it!

Thanks for dropping by.    Kathleen 


On Your Mark. Ready, Set, WRITE — a Joy Journal

Record your moments of JOY!

Joy Journals have been around awhile.  That doesn’t mean you cannot write one.  The nice thing about these journals is they are easy and fun.

They are designed to prompt you to find life’s joys all around you.  Remember, keep your notes short and sweet.


  • Small notebook
  • Pen or pencil


  • Enjoying cloud, sun or moon scapes
  • At home, work or out and about
  • Alone or with family or friends

What to write:

  • Goofy smile or action that brings you joy
  • Beautiful site that makes you feel good
  • Kindness shown to you or someone near by

Purpose of journal:

  • To capture small things in life — that are gone in a flash
  • To channel negative thoughts into positive thoughts
  • To experience JOY real time

You don’t need to look at the world through rose colored glasses.  You do want to start making a conscious choice to look for goodness all around you.


Someone around you has just verbally offended you.

Don’t:  Come back with a snide remark or swear.

Do:  Shut your mouth or … reply, “You are probably right.”

Why?  Because people love to be right.  That will shut them up!


When you let a negative thought in—let it go right out of your head.  That includes your desire to complain.  Good luck!

No New Year’s Resolution Required:

  • Look at the glass half full — anywhere, anytime.
  • Keep your changes to yourself — just do it.
  • No one’s permission needed.
  • Make small or large changes for more positive thinking.

The antique dinner plate above was placed right over the kitchen sink, so I could often see something that makes me feel good each time I look at it.

The joy, I feel when looking at it, makes doing the dishes go better.

In my tiny kitchen, a small dining table flanked by two chairs, nestled beneath short windows are made cozy with the addition of gently fluttering cafe curtains, made of antique, Irish linen dinner napkins.

The walls have been painted, Heavenly Blue, (satin finish) by Benjamin Moore.

My kitchen is a favorite spot to share a hot pot of tea with a friend.

Deferred gratification puts money in your piggy bank:

Every time you choose to delay a purchase —  you save money!  Start choosing whether you really want that cuppa at your local Star Bucks or whether you would like to save your cash.

Delayed gratification is associated with resisting a smaller, but more immediate reward in order to receive a larger or more enduring reward later.

— Unknown —

Book Nook:

Please note that I have not read either of the books listed.

Delayed Gratification
by Rick Katz.  Paperback edition.

Delay Gratification, by Jessie McAna

Note:  My tech support, Alex, told me that my links were not right.  He sent me an email with a command statement that I did not understand.  My guess is that he thinks I know how to write WordPress Code.  Nope.  Please accept my apologies.  Thank you.

Thanks for dropping by.     Kathleen 




Glad Tidings of Comfort and Joy

Christmas 2017 is nearly upon us.

I wish you Glad Tidings of Comfort and Joy!

Through my blog, we are all joined together near and far—one country to another.  You, my subscribers have given me joy all year, as you subscribe and offer your support!

Hand stitched Christmas wall hanging.

Merry Christmas and best wishes in 2018!

Thanks for dropping by.    Kathleen 

Forget Your Winter Blahs and Enjoy This Lovely Orchid

Dosen’t this photo of breathtaking orchids make you forget your winter blahs?  I was overjoyed when my sister, Carolyn, sent me this picture. To be able to create such natural beauty is a true gift!

The orchids I grew in Florida were nestled on tree branches.  I loved the one I had with white petals edged with deep purple.

Today, you can often find great orchids at your grocery store or home stores such as HomeDepo, Lowe’s.  You can bet a good florist will have them too.

Take a close look at the orchids above.  Note the fairly small clay pot with stones rather than soil as the potting medium.  The plant is growing on a small, east facing patio—in Key West.

You don’t have to grow yours in the sunny Keyes.  Give one a try where you have bright, indirect light and plenty of humidity.  Create humidity by misting your orchid with a small mister.  Remember—don’t baby your new baby!

Please drop me a line and include a photo of your orchid, so I can share it on an upcoming post.  I know everyone will be glad you did!

Ways to chase the blahs away:

  • Enjoy a hot cup of tea.
  • Curl up with a good book under a throw on the couch.
  • Sleep in When it’s snowing and cold outside.

I have been enjoying Harney and Sons tea for years. Use Code HOLIDAY17 For 20%  Also check for free shipping!


The purpose of life is to discover your gift.  

The work of life is to develop it.  

The meaning of life is to give your life away.

— David Visconti —


Thanks for dropping by.     Kathleen